Gabriel had his first ever bottle of formula today while I worked.
I know I should be proud, I know I should feel successful, I know I should feel accomplished and privileged for what I have done for my baby. It is a feat that I made it from March to August as a working, pumping Mommy without supplementing. Heck, I should still be reveling in my 210 oz. milk donation.
But just that 6 oz. bottle of formula made me feel other things: defeated, guilty, and angry.
It will amount to at max 18 oz. formula per week. Three feedings away from Mommy per week. That's three feedings he does not actually nurse from me. And those three feedings I just cannot replace by pumping.
And I'm probably, as they say, a "tool" for sitting here upset about this when my baby is headed to the 10-month-old category. In other words, I should be grateful that for almost 10 months, Gabriel only nursed or had Mommy's milk.
Nevertheless, I am feeling defeated that my body could not respond to the pump, guilty that my baby is consuming something other than liquid gold, and angry that I am not with him to prevent this from happening.
Yes, I'm angry. I'm angry that even though I planned and worked so hard for my baby to only have breast milk the entire first year, he is not only having breast milk. I'm angry because I went sleepless, I fought my baby's initial weight loss and jaundice with tenacity, I've been bitten, I've gotten milk on my clothes at work before meetings, and so on. I'm mad that despite all of these efforts and sacrifices, I did not make it to my ultimate goal.
I hate being negative, and I am truly a very thankful person, but this is where I am tonight. It's a crappy thing to post about, but it is part of my breastfeeding journey, and it warrants a voice on the blog just the same...